Arsenal board approves Rooney's pursuit

Arsenal have cleared the way for Arsene Wenger to sign Wayne Rooney.

Chief executive Ivan Gazidis said the Gunners CAN afford to pay Rooney more than £200,000 a week and Manchester United a £25million fee.

Gazidis was adamant only boss Wenger will decide whether to bid for the England striker.

But he claimed Arsenal are finally willing and able to make the stellar signings required for a genuine title challenge, smashing their rigid pay structure.

Gunners’ revenues are set to top £300m with the new Emirates, kit and TV rights deal kicking in over the next two years. They will have £70m every year for new signings.

Asked directly if they could afford the England hitman and his wages, Gazidis said: “I don’t know what his fee would be.

“I’m talking about an extra £70m of additional, high-margin revenue — so of course we could do that.

“We could do more than that.”

It is a massive boost to long-suffering fans desperate to see big-name signings after eight years of losing their best players and winning nothing.

Gazidis added: “We should be able to compete at a level like Bayern. I’m not saying we are there — we have a way to go.

“We are an extraordinarily ambitious club. This has been about putting us up with the best in the world and now the question is turning that platform into on-field success.

“Fans want to see real progression.

“I do believe we can win the title and that’s certainly our ambition.”